- Mental Health
Are You A Tech Addict?
Records have been broken and history rewritten with the use of technology, even keeping track of everyday achievements has become more challenging than ever with recent technological advancements being felt worldwide.
Technology has broken barriers that seemed impossible just a few years back. With a wide range of improvements, your smart phone or tablet, that could only socially network three years ago is now doing all your school or office work anywhere conveniently. A good example is my smart phone. It has enabled me to write this article and I am not even in my office or at home.Such major improvements have made the human race more productive and efficient than a millennium of hard labor.
However, doctors and scientists are worried that this same human race that is making incredible achievements, could end up hooked on tech addiction.It's not a matter of 'if' anymore but rather a matter of 'when'.
Yes, tech addiction is a thing.It is defined as the incorrigible need to use a technological device such as a smart phone, tablet, gaming device or computer, especially when under pressure.Tech addiction is increasingly becoming a real threat, especially after it is estimated that this year alone smart phone users will have increased to 2.1 billion.
The big question remains 'are you already hooked up on tech addiction?'*
Signs That You May Be A Tech Addict
The question of tech addiction is highly sensitive and anyone willing to confront this issue will require utmost courage and determination before he/she can successfully claim to have won the war.
The following questions will help you (or someone you may know) determine if you are already hooked on your smart phone:
1. Do you feel an urgent need to look at your smart phone when you don't have it, maybe you have lent it to your friend or left it somewhere?
2. Do you look at your messages the minute you receive them, and/or keep on checking your phone for any messages you may have missed?
3. Do you have illusions that your phone is ringing even when its not?
4. Do you feel agitated, sometimes even angry when your Internet connection goes down and your phone battery goes out?
5. Are you depressed when you can't seem to find your phone or when your phone is broken?
6. Do you forage for your device immediately after school or working hours?
If you answered yes to at least four of the questions then you may have a problem. This is not just a harmless disorder as some may portray through social sites, and compared to chewing or other harmless habits.
Tech addiction has been known to cause among other problems:
- Sleep disorder.
- Either weight gain or weight loss.
- Social anxiety.
- Constant headaches.
The only known and sure way to treat such an addiction is to limit your use of tech devices. You might choose the expensive therapy route, but this is no sure way.
Doctors and therapists propose a 'do it yourself' approach by doing the following:
1. Know the truth about tech addiction.
Tech addiction could leave you vulnerable to other serious addictions like Internet porn. Lying to your friends and family about your problem could also make you loose your social life.
2. Limit your use.
Try not to look at your phone especially when on social events, at the dinner table or while working. Try not look at your messages or pick up your phone the minute it rings.
3. Have a social life.
Find friends to hang out with spend time with them. They will keep you preoccupied and help you spend your time better.
4. Practice self control.
If you like using your tech device especially when angry or when under pressure, self control will be crucial in your recovery.
5. Admit to your problem and seek help.
When you finally decide to find help from medical professionals and friends it will be easier for you to quit tech addiction.
With the emergence of virtual reality (VR) it is expected that we will be slaves of our devices. In the near future you might depend on your smart phone in everything you do, and its not just Ubber.
It's expected that people will become lonelier and will be hooked on there devices.This will lead to a surge of Internet porn users, with further effects. Further research is still ongoing to fully understand the effects of this relatively new addiction.
Technology is already tailored in our daily lives. There are uncountable apps that we use everyday already as a necessity. Don't be a tech addict, at least for now, before the whole world becomes dependent on technology.
Smart decisions now will lead to a better future both for us and our future generations.
*I will be talking mostly about smart phone use to represent other technological devices since a smart phone is something most of us will relate to.